A web server is a computer-driven application that provides a specific data content over the internet.
The term web server can also refer to the computer device that runs the application and it delivers a certain amount of HTML documents and any additional content that is needed for the process of reception, e.g. images or scripts.
The content is transferred to specific web browsers like the Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox and can be either company-internal, restricted to local areas or appearing to be worldwide accessible. Certain protocols like HTTP or HTTPS [Hyper Transfer Protocol (Secure)] or network protocols like IP (Internet Protocol) or TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) resemble specific aids of data transmission.
Delivered documents may contain static data that cannot be changed (HTML-pages) or dynamically created data that is different due to individual users and compiled through different sources (ASP, PHP, JSP). Dynamic data like PHP-documents need to be analyzed by web servers and transferred to web browsers as simple HTML-pages. This method allows to access different data from several specific sources.
Every data of a complete web page needs to be transferred separately, as a web browser needs to send a request to the web server for any kind of data. Web servers need to protocol every occurrence and transfer via log files to generate an average number of visitors.
Whereas stateless protocols like HTTP allow easy allocations of individual users, this process is not always clear and therefore not accurate enough. Interconnected proxy servers additionally complicate the process of allocation.